As we wrap up the month of September, we draw curtains on the first half of the academic year. How has the year been so far? Were you able to keep up with your goals? What are the aspects of life you want to improve?
While you prepare to ace the next half of the year, look back at the goals you’d set in the beginning. Re-evaluate and revise them based on the challenges you have faced so far. Clearly established goals can anchor your emotions and reinstate your focus in the face of stress. As the coming months can get demanding — with projects, mock tests, and board exams — taking a moment to ponder over your efforts and resetting your goals can do wonders.
With each passing month, you take one step closer to board exams. Midyear reviews instil your mind with motivation and help you find purpose. This is especially effective at a time when you’ve just completed your mid-term exams and have a fair idea of your strengths and weaknesses. A self-review offers an opportunity to assess your progress to understand where you need support and guidance.
Often, the goals we set at the beginning of a year are based on our experiences and lessons from the previous year. With time, we understand the challenges and notice room for improvement in other spheres of life. For example, your new goal can be to improve your sleep or eat healthier. You may also want to revise a previous goal to accommodate other habits, like — cutting back on TV time so that you can get more practice in a sport or waking up early to add to your study hours. Thus, midyear reviews help you find an upgraded version of your annual goals.
Want to reflect on your progress so far? Download the template below to start your self-review!
Remember when a goal seemed almost impossible to achieve? Look at you now! Look how far you have come. Remember, actions, no matter how big or small, contribute to a larger purpose. There may be 100 steps to reach a set target, but the progress of even 10 steps in the right direction is commendable. Therefore, recognise your efforts and celebrate your achievements before you jump on to your next challenge.
Additionally, take note of areas where you know you can do better. List out what you would have done differently in the template. Make sure you are realistic about the habits/actions you want to accommodate in your daily schedule. Ask yourself what motivated or restricted your efforts towards a particular goal. This will give you clarity on an action plan that helps you achieve your target.
Once you have a clear understanding of your progress so far, be clear of your next set of goals. Get specific and make sure it is measurable. Vague goals may hamper your motivation as you are unlikely to have a plan for it.
You can divide your goals into areas such as
Prioritise these goals and revisit them often to ensure you are making progress. Focusing on three goals at a time is ideal to ensure you don’t exhaust yourself. Remember, progress brings joy when you enjoy the process.
Get realistic about your goals — you know yourself better than anyone. Before you set a target, think of your capabilities, skills, and mental bandwidth. By now, you will have a fair idea of upcoming events at school. You will also be well aware of the time and effort they demand. Choose goals that can be accomplished parallelly with your academic commitments. You will be setting yourself up for disappointment if you do not acknowledge the limitations you’ll find in your path.
A positive outlook can help you build resilience in several aspects of life. Cultivate a growth-oriented mindset toward your academic and personal goals. This will help you draw lessons from your mistakes instead of feeling discouraged in the face of failure.
Positive thoughts can also encourage learning and motivate you to focus better. For instance, if you approach learning better writing skills with a positive mindset, you may be more likely to stay focused since you’re more open to the experience. Visualising a positive outcome at the onset of a task can help you map out the steps that will take you to your goal.
Time management is a tool that can save you in multiple aspects of life. Dedicate sufficient time to each goal to ensure you’re making progress. Research various time management techniques online and adapt those that seem easy and effective.
Right before the beginning of each month, you can spend a few minutes prioritising your goals. Then, create a schedule that accommodates the events for the month while allotting enough time to the top priorities. This way, you will remind yourself of the goals and improve your productivity by planning your schedule in advance.
Admit it, an exhausted body and an overworked mind can seldom help you grow towards your goals. No matter how busy you are, ensure you spend some time working on yourself. Your physical and mental well-being should always be a priority.
Go on a walk with your pet or stretch your muscles in a 30-minute yoga session. Before you hit the bed, take 10 minutes to meditate — sit up straight and focus on your breathing. You will eventually notice how a little effort towards your health can make a huge difference to your day!
A goal/habit tracker is the best way to monitor and learn from your progress over a period. A tracker offers an overview of your efforts and successes, bringing more accountability and motivation. There are numerous habit tracker templates you can find online — start with a weekly habit tracker. Here’s how you can make the most of a tracker:
A self-review intends to help you recognise your strengths and weakness. It is an exercise that allows you to reflect on your journey so far. Thus, utilise it as a tool that enhances your growth, not a technique that makes you feel overwhelmed. Take it one day at a time and never lose faith in your abilities.
What are you looking forward to in the next few months? Tell us how you plan to progress in the comments below!
As an introverted teen who loved reading crime-thriller novels, Ashritha knew she was destined to be a writer. Like Dumbledore, Ashritha is a strong believer in the magic of words. She finds joy in the little things — a long walk at dawn, sipping a cup of filter coffee watching the sunset, or rewatching old rom-com movies that make her heart smile.
September 27, 2022
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